Why Now is Not the Time to Stop Marketing Your Practice
Recent months have been some of the hardest times for Americans in a long time. In response to a new contagion, the world has taken unprecedented measures to slow the spread of disease and keep the healthcare system from becoming overwhelmed. Back in March, the progression of COVID-19 in the U.S. accelerated, triggering mass shelter-in-place orders. Understandably, this caught most orthodontic offices off-guard, resulting in tough decisions to temporarily close down, furlough employees, and in some cases, shut the doors for good.
Now, restrictions are being lifted and most orthodontic practices are back up and running. With so much anxiety and uncertainty still in the air, it may not seem like the time to focus on marketing, let alone come up with a marketing strategy. However, it’s vitally important to make sure you’re marketing your practice during COVID-19 effectively and reinforcing community trust in your brand.
Keep the Momentum Going
With the summer season underway, orthodontic practices are in the middle of the hottest time of the year to start orthodontic treatment. As you open up your doors again, you may find yourself struggling to fit in all of your appointments due to rules on social distancing and the backlog of patients. However, you can’t count on your current full calendar to carry you through the summer and into fall. It’s vital to keep paying attention to your marketing channels while nurturing new leads so you can keep a steady flow through the end of the summer and into the fall and winter months.
Address Safety Concerns for Orthodontic Patients
Now is a critical moment for your orthodontic practice to reassure your market that you’re taking patient safety seriously. Emphasize how your office is making space for social distancing, taking extra steps to sanitize the office, and any other precautions you’re taking to prevent the spread of the virus. Be sure to make expectations for patients clear as well, such as if you’ll require patients to wear masks in the office, ask them to wait in their cars instead of your reception area, and other potential policies.
To make sure each potential and current patient knows the measures you’re taking, use as many marketing channels as possible to send out the information, including email newsletters, social media posts, and physical signs on location.
Emphasize Affordable Payment Options
The big elephant in the room for everyone considering starting treatment right now is the economic fallout of the pandemic. Because of this, you’ll want to gear much of your marketing towards affordable payment options and perhaps offer discounts on certain treatment options. If you don’t already, create pages on your website detailing the ways your office makes it easy to pay for braces and run campaigns on social media highlighting your financing options and any discounts you decide to offer.
Despite the uncertainty this moment in time brings, we’ll ultimately make it to the other side with plenty of lessons to take with us. Continuing to market your orthodontic practice with care will be one of the key elements of ensuring your success during this crisis.